Protecting Cultural Heritage

Learning Resilience from the Past

Within the context of climate change, sea level rise and extreme weather events threaten not only coastal communities globally, but also the archaeological record of their history, knowledge, and culture. Dunes and coastal areas often protect the artifacts and stories of the Puerto Rican people. Unfortunately, the speed at which changes and impacts to these areas are happening has made archaeologists painfully aware of how vulnerable these libraries of cultural heritage are and how fast they are disappearing. 


Destruction of archaeological sites and tangible cultural heritage is not a problem solely relevant to archaeologists or heritage professionals. Cultural heritage and local knowledge are integral to reducing social vulnerabilities and increasing community resilience to climate change. In the context of disasters, documenting and engaging with cultural heritage, in collaboration with communities, is a path towards supporting local community resilience because it helps affected groups to re-ground with their past and local histories.


The DUNAS project is an interdisciplinary approach to respond to this palpable threat. By working with ecologists and climate experts to mitigate coastal dune erosion, we buy time to document and learn from the communities of the past to inform our resilient future. 

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On the Antiquity of Puerto Rican Heritage from Dr. Rivera-Collaza

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Guía de Identificación:

 Arqueología from Para la Naturaleza.

DUNAS Artifacts

Download files of artifacts found during the DUNAS restoration. You can take these files to any 3D printer and make a piece of history come alive! 


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 “To safeguard natural and human communities in the face of a changing climate.”

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The Climate Science Alliance is fiscally sponsored by the California Wildlife Foundation (Tax ID: 68-0234744).

© Climate Science Alliance 2019